Furniture at Storage Auctions: What You Should Know

4421976654_52e772c69b_z(2)People store all kinds of stuff in units, ranging from small collectibles to motorcycles and power tools. However, one of the most common items found in self-storage units is furniture, and for good reason: when you buy a new couch or dining room table, you may not have room in your home for the old one. Rather than hauling it off to the dump or giving it away for free, some people prefer to place old furniture such as this in a self-storage unit.

If you are in the business of buying and selling property through storage auctions, chances are you'll come across furniture that has been left behind. Many first-time auction hunters assume that all furniture is valuable, and so they raise their bids in an effort to win units that contain visible pieces of furniture. While it's true that certain types of furniture can be resold for profit, others may have little-to-no resale value. So, how do you know if a piece of furniture is valuable and the unit worth bidding on?

Generally speaking, older, more well-made furniture tends to yield a higher selling value than newer, poorly-made pieces. An antique dresser or chest of drawers made of genuine hardwood materials, for instance, may fetch $600 or more to the right buyer. When sizing up a unit to determine your max bid, check to see if it contains furniture, and if does, try to estimate the age of the furniture. It's not uncommon for units to contain furniture that is 50+ years old. Vintage and antique pieces such as this are easier to sell and yield a higher overall value than newer pieces.

But you should also consider the condition of the furniture. An antique table or desk isn't going to sell for much if it's rotten or moldy. This is why it's recommended that you look for furniture in temperature/climate-controlled units, as this tends to preserve the condition of furniture more effectively. Even if the furniture is damaged, though, you may be able to have it repaired for a cost. The average cost to refinish a wooden dining chair usually runs around $200-$300. If you can resell it for $500, though, that's a pretty decent profit for a minimum amount of work.

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